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by Abigail Van Buren

Word Is Out: Rudolph's Red Nose May Just Be Makeup

DEAR ABBY: I demonstrate products in a supermarket. It isn't easy, and sometimes I feel like I'm between a rock and a hard place.

Will you please tell parents that if we do not give their children samples of food, it is for their own good. We don't know what kind of food allergies their children may have. The company I work for will fire us if we give samples to children without a parent first giving permission. -- TRYING HARD IN TULSA, OKLA.

DEAR TRYING HARD: You have my sympathy, and I'm pleased to pass along your message. I recently read that food allergies among children are on the rise, and that 4 percent of kids today suffer from one. The policy your company is enforcing is for everyone's protection and should not be misinterpreted. It's in place so that no one's little angel gets sick or has an allergic reaction.